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    The Outline | Robert Silverman | 11/13/19 | 7 min
    9 reads10 comments
    9.5
    The Outline
    9 reads
    9.5
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    • bill
      Top reader of all timeScoutScribe
      8 months ago

      Yep. This is revelatory.

      I too can remember the awesomeness of TV before streaming took over. In fact, I remember all of my favorite cable channels from childhood - Nickelodeon (Channel 24), Comedy Central (77), MTV (26), and HBO (14), which apparently my parents paid a little extra for. And I remember that when all else failed, there was always Gameshow Network (93). Family Feud wasn’t good because it was good. It’s was good because it was bad. It invited the vegetative state, openly, without tricking you into thinking you were performing some kind of public service by watching. And as if to emphasize the point, I usually ate giant bowls of Cinnamon Toast Crunch while watching.

      PS When initially drafting this comment, I accidentally wrote, like, a million paragraphs about my love of country music. So instead I just turned that into a blog post. Enjoy: https://readup.com/read/billloundycom/why-i-love-country-music

      • jeff
        Top reader this weekReading streakScribe
        8 months ago

        This is literally anything but revelatory! It's a nicely written (hopefully tongue-in-cheek) reminiscence but the assertion is completely false. You can get HBO for $15 a month and watch their entire back catalog in HD on all your devices. That is objectively amazing when you consider that until just a couple years ago you had to pay for it as an add-on to an expensive cable package (well over $100/mo!) that could only be played through a set top box (which also had to be rented!). Also there are endless numbers of new streaming shows that facilitate just tuning out if that's what you're looking for.

        Like a Sword of Damocles perpetually hanging over my head, every time I turn on the TV, I’m wracked by the fear that I’ll inevitably be missing out on something else, somewhere, that’s better, more enriching and fulfilling. All roads lead to failure, then, and with every hour passed gawking at the screen, I grow more anxiety-ridden.

        Forget peak TV, this might be peak Millennial.

        • bill
          Top reader of all timeScoutScribe
          8 months ago

          Lolol. Wait, I maybe did get mixed up on what “revelatory” means. So it isn’t when you read something that you know you’re gonna agree with and then feel really awesome that someone else shares your exact opinion? :P

          It’s def tongue-in-cheek! I’m 95% sure that the author wouldn’t go back to the old tech if he had the chance. But I think your financial analysis is still missing the point. It’s possible to take a big step forward and still lose some little bits of magic along the way. Kids these days have nothing like One Saturday Morning or TGIF, lineups that had a special vibe because they were attached to a certain days of the week and times of the day.

          • jeff
            Top reader this weekReading streakScribe
            8 months ago

            Hahaha I can't believe you literally dropped a "Kids these days"! I refuse to partake in such negativity and give any credence to the idea of lost magic. We had some wonderful, memorable experiences during our childhood and our children will as well. The fact that there will be some things that are different between those experiences is something to celebrate, not lament.

            Maybe I'm being overly sensitive but articles like these put me off because I see this tone of pessimism everywhere and I feel like there's a real propensity among our generation to just revel in such discontentedness. It's like it's become something of a national past time.

            Louis CK's "Everything Is Amazing and Nobody Is Happy" bit is more relevant than ever: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nUBtKNzoKZ4

    • Plum8 months ago

      Love his humor and also love the fact that Millenials are beginning to understand how us Olds feel when things change too fast and life goes more quickly than we can fathom or enjoy.

      • bill
        Top reader of all timeScoutScribe
        8 months ago

        Yup! I’m a Millennial and this was my favorite excerpt from the entire article, because it describes exactly how I feel:

        Perhaps this makes me nothing more than yet another Old who’s scared of a changing world filled with newfangled gadgets and wants nothing more than to curl up the warm embrace of the bland and the familiar, as others have done before me.

    • jlcipriani8 months ago

      What I remember being kind of fun was the commonality of experience when there were fewer shows- the closest thing to that I have experienced in years was Game of Thrones. Now there are devoted fandoms for almost everything- but those fandoms are less likely to contain loads of diversity, so the conversations engendered aren’t quite as rich.

      On the whole, this piece seems to fall squarely into the,”something lost, something gained through change,” rubric which applies to everything in the universe except the invention of dishwashers.

      • bill
        Top reader of all timeScoutScribe
        8 months ago

        Hahaha. Your quote about dishwashers cracked me up SO much. That hit me right where it counts (as your comments often do!)

        I know you know how much I try to embrace mundane stuff, and turn it into a meditation. And dishes are my ultimate challenge. I often look at a pot with a bunch of burned stuff in the bottom and I need like, ten minutes of mantras (“This isn’t torture. This is fun. This isn’t torture. This is fun”) to get to a place of positivity. And by positivity I actually just mean, like, not hellish negativity. About one in ten times I can get to a point where I don’t feel like God is horrible and spiteful, and that means I’m winning.

    • sjwoo
      Scribe
      8 months ago

      No doubt that the streaming wars have just commenced and will end up with some form of massive consolidation. My guess is that it'll take about a decade. Disney+ will become Disney^3 and gobble up a bunch of them.

      I also think that we'll see a reverse -- kind of like what happened with BoJack Horseman, that it's a Netflix show that ended up showing on Comedy Central. Wouldn't it be a hoot if Netflix showed up as a channel at some point in the future? And it'll be a "curated continuous stream" -- which, if you think about it, is what cable is.

      I agree with this writer 100% -- as TV got smarter, it got to be a job to watch. That really is what it feels like now, when somebody tells you to watch The Americans. I mean not only do you have to go through years of shows, but the mental and psychological effort required to watch the show (like you absolutely have to watch it, you can't be folding laundry or cooking up pasta with it in the background) is a significant barrier. Better to just watch a rerun of Friends or Frasier. No wonder at all why those shows are so sought after, multitask TV at its finest.

    • Jkloundy8 months ago

      Skitermarink, a dink a do.... Skitermarink a a do....... My kids watched this video a thousand times...... It was mindless and fun. With all the cable and non-cable options we still put the old tape in the VCR...

      But it was kinda fun before streaming when we had to watch mini series live like; Shogun, The Thornbirds, Roots,Rich Man Poor Man........ These were pure entertainment moments that we looked forward to and everyone would talk about the following day. I do miss the slowness and routine of those old shows.